Race Weekend Central

Chad Johnston Back as SHR Crew Chief

Chad Johnston is back as crew chief at Stewart-Haas Racing in 2023, helming the pit box for Ryan Preece‘s No. 41 NASCAR Cup Series team, SHR announced Jan. 6.

Johnston, who previously worked with SHR as Tony Stewart’s crew chief in 2014 and 2015, most recently held the role at TRICON Garage in the NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series, leading the No. 17 — including Preece — to five top fives and six top 10s in 16 appearances in 2022.

He last worked in the Cup Series for Chip Ganassi Racing in 2020.

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Meanwhile, SHR also announced the promotion of Jonathan Toney to crew chief of the team’s NASCAR Xfinity Series program for Cole Custer, having previously served as an engineer.

“In Chad Johnston and Jonathan Toney, we’ve got two guys who are hungry to win that also bring a lot of smarts and experience to each of their roles,” Greg Zipadelli, chief competition officer of SHR, said in a team release. “Both are very familiar with our program and our people.

“It’s great to have Chad back with our race team. A lot of the people he worked with when he was here before are still here today, and he already has a rapport with Ryan Preece. Chad fits in seamlessly and has a tremendous work ethic. Jonathan has been a workhorse and his fingerprints are on a lot of the success this team has enjoyed. He’s been here since the very beginning and knows this place inside and out. Jonathan has definitely earned this opportunity and all of us are proud to see him take on this new role.”

The Cup No. 41 earned three top 10s in 2022 with Custer as its driver. He moves to the No. 00 full time in Xfinity for 2023.

About the author

Rutherford is the managing editor of Frontstretch, a position he gained in 2015 after serving on the editing staff for two years. At his day job, he's a journalist covering music and rock charts at Billboard. He lives in New York City, but his heart is in Ohio -- you know, like that Hawthorne Heights song.

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